Egypt plans new fund for travel-related infrastructure improvements

Travelers are no longer afraid to visit Egypt due to its growing political stability.
Marriott Mena House, Cairo, Egypt. Photo credit: Marriott International

In a bid to attract more visitors, especially from Asia and Latin America, Egypt’s Ministry of Tourism is launching a new private equity fund for improvements to the country's travel-related infrastructure—including hotels. 

According to a recent statement from the ministry, the plan includes developing services provided by hotels, restaurants and all tourism destinations and locations in the country. 

Minister of Tourism Rania al Mashat said that "several variables" have prevented upgrades to Egypt’s hotels for more than 12 years. This fund, then, could help support these efforts,  

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During a press conference, al Mashat said that the ministry is seeking partnerships with private companies to implement the plan. 

An estimated 8 million tourists visited Egypt in 2017, and the number jumped 40 percent in the first nine months of 2018, Al Mashat said in an interview with Bloomberg. “We expect that by the end of 2018 we will not be at the levels that we’ve seen in 2010, but we are approaching that,” she added. “The rebound is quite steep and we’re trying to put the industry on a competitive base compared to our peers.”

Global hotel companies are paying attention: Last month, Indonesia's Sahid Hotels & Resorts Group started negotiations with the Egyptian Ministries of Tourism and Investment and International Cooperation, as well as private sector companies for joint ventures, looking to invest in the country's hotel and tourism-education sectors.